|Untitled / 24 x 30 / oil on canvas|
Still on the easel - this is at least the third painting on this particular canvas - the other two being wipe offs. I wonder if I will keep this one......
And then there was Rome! What a magnificent city - so ancient and so new. I loved every minute of exploring it. This is the lobby of the Marriott Grand Flora Hotel with hundreds of tennis balls hanging from the ceiling - we discovered that the Italian Tennis Open was being played in Rome the week we were there. We had a magnificent room - complete with feather mattress on the bed and balcony over looking the Borghese Villa and gardens. I had no trouble falling asleep in Rome!
|Marriott Grand Flora Hotel - Rome|
The daytime view from our balcony overlooking the Borghese ruins. The Vatican was not far in this direction also and the American Embassy was a short walk down the street. It was a perfect location.
Some incredible churches that we happened upon as we explored Rome - we saw so many - each one more beautiful than the last.
|Church interior with mass in progress|
|Church with gorgeous life size wooden crucifixion carvings|
|A not atypical church entry|
The Pantheon is in such perfect condition you would think it was built yesterday however it was completed by the Emperor Hadrian in about 125 AD. The rotunda is resplendent with sculptures and art work and is still the world's largest unreinforced concrete done. The Pantheon is still actively used as a church with masses held every Sunday and has also functioned as a tomb. I was surprised to learn that the painter Raphael, 2 Italian kings and a queen are all buried here.
|The Pantheon - under the rotunda|
|Inside the Pantheon|
Our next stop was the Colosseum. We spent several hours there exploring and wondering about the intricate Roman engineering that allowed it to function. Not only did it house the gladiators and many very large, wild animals beneath the main arena - there were very sophisticated mechanisms for moving them about and up to the arena. And did you know that it was occasionally flooded and ships held mock battles there? It was an almost inconceivable drainage system that allowed this to occur.
|My family and I at the Colosseum - typical tourists!|
|The Colosseum held over 50,000 people and it was not hard to imagine the spectacles that unfolded here.|
|Inside a Roman delicatessen!|
What a holiday trip - and more yet to tell you about!